Peacekeepers seize army base inside Georgia

Russian peacekeeping forces have taken control of Georgia’s largest airbase, about 40km from the border with Abkhazia.

The Russian Defence Ministry said the troops were taking ‘preventative action’ at the base in the town of Senaki.

For the first time since Georgia launched a military offensive against South Ossetia last week, ground forces belonging to the Russian peacekeeping contingent have begun operations inside the borders of Georgia.

A spokesman for the Defence Ministry confirmed the incursion, which was first reported by Georgia’s Internal Ministry.

"Russian peacekeepers and military units attached to them are taking action to prevent Georgia from shelling South Ossetia and Russian peacekeepers," he said.

Another objective of the operation is to prevent ‘a build-up of additional volunteers and reservists’ mobilized to continue military operations the breakaway republics.

Earlier reports indicated that Abkhazian troops supported by Russian fighter planes had taken control of a village in Georgia’s Zugdidi region. But Abkhazian sources have denied the reports.

Medvedev compares Georgia to Nazi Germany

While talking to Russian MPs on Monday, President Dmitry Medevev drew a clear parallel between the current Georgian regime and Nazi Germany.

The President said Russia is not going to "pacify the aggressor" as Europe did in 1938, by signing the Munich treaty with Hitler. "We all know to what tragic consequences this led," he said.

Dmitry Medvedev also described the Russian military operation in South Ossetia as "the only appropriate and absolutely effective" response.

[Source: Russia Today, Moscow, 11Aug08]

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The Question of South Ossetia
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